Saturday, August 30, 2008
Friday, August 29, 2008
I put police in quotes because I don't believe they were acting in any way legally. If the force is acting illegally they stop being police at that point in my book and become just another petty dictators strong arm force.
So, I'm interested to see what happens this time. Will it be a replay of the worst that can happen or will calmer heads prevail.
Listen the list goes on, but don't get cocky. The election is still over 2 months off. Let's get out there and be counted.
Thursday, August 28, 2008
http://www.gutenberg.org/wiki/Main_Page This is a non-profit outfit that's transcribing out of copyright material to electronic format on the web. A lot of the classics that I've read over the last couple of years are from here. If nothing else, contribute a bit, it's a good thing.
http://www.mobipocket.com/en/HomePage/default.asp?Language=EN This is the online store for the ebook reader I use on my PC. Some good stuff, some weird stuff too.
http://www.baen.com/ A lot of my favorite SciFi writers are part of Baen Publishing. They've got a free library and a link to http://www.webscription.net/default.aspx which carries several publishing houses output.
I shall now go off on a tangent.
Eric Flint, the "web librarian" of Baen's free library has a treatise, if you will, about making these books freely available. Read it, it's good, just go to the free library and click the home link.
Edit: Alan over at Snarkybytes just pointed me to Feedbooks. I just might sign up for an account. I was looking at the Stanza reader for iPhone earlier today since Mobipocket hasn't ported over theirs yet.
Which, if you believe all the hype the music and book publishing moguls say, makes me a minority of one of purchasing something I downloaded for free. But that's another rant.
I sat down in the reading area of Border's and with my required cuppa I read up to the part I stopped at last night. Now that I'm home, I've placed it on top of my reading now pile. That's not something I normally do. I don't like reading more than one book at a time. And I really hate putting a book down in the middle and stopping to read something else. It's plays havoc with the movie. Right, what do I mean by that you ask? When I read a book, and I think this is by no means unique, once I get into it a movie starts playing in my head. The movie is my minds construction of the book populated by faces and places described by the author. After a while, I'm not reading, I'm watching the movie play, each scene constructed from the pages in front of me.
But every once in a while I'll find a book that forces me to hit pause on my current book and start the new show. So far, this is one of them. I know I won't be disappointed.
On a side note, you might not think that buying a real honest to $DIETY paper book is such a big deal, but when you're on the road as much as my job requires carrying said paper could take up an entire suitcase in and of itself. About 3 years ago I went electronic with my books. That meant that I could carry enough book to read without the associated 2 tons of weight. So, when I like a book enough to actually buy the paper version just to put on the shelf it says something.
Anyhoo, what I like the best was his McCain spot on the left. It gave me a chuckle.
Wednesday, August 27, 2008
I give you another grand slam post, by Brigid. Which should be no surprise given the caliber of her writing, but go read it nonetheless.
I've never been very political before, and I'm feeling more and more that I've waited too long. But we need to do the good fight now, for later it may be impossible.
Monday, August 25, 2008
During everyone else's business hours I step up to the range with, usually, the place to myself. It's nice to pick whatever lane I want, take my time loading mags, setting everything out, finding the right mindset for the target, be it aim, trigger control, sight picture, etc. Then when everything feels right, just plinking away till I decide to stop. Then with a nod to the range safety monitor, amble out and tsk tsk over the target, puzzling out this flyer or that group. All in all it's a fine day and I can make it last as long as I want.
But go on a shooting day and the enjoyment is... dampened. Now, I'm constrained to a pace not of my choosing. A pace that, while convenient for the safety officer, is equally uncomfortable for everyone else involved. Now, I have to deal with the distractions that others around me cause. Whether it be a couple of guys talking in the next lane or the coolest gun I've seen in a while in the other. The zen of the range is lost, if you will.
I just want to say, on one side we have a man who believes he's the promised one (whether that's the second coming or the antichrist I haven't heard yet) and his running mate, the man who not only authored the last "assault weapons" ban (a truely useless and insane piece of legislation), but has bragged about it.
Be afraid, be very afraid.
Sunday, August 24, 2008
One of the beers I ran across this last month that I wished I had time to pick up was out of a Moab Brewery in Moab UT. It was called Polygamy Porter. I had one just for the name and really liked the flavor and weight.
Told ya I'd blog you about it.
Friday, August 22, 2008
I command that you shall hear it over and over and over....
Muhahaha ha ha ha haaa
You know, like one of those endless loop tape thingys.
Come on, you've got to have heard of those thing. What, have you been living in a cave all your life?!?
Fine, just hit replay a few times and we'll call it even.
Jeez, some people. How can one be expected to be a halfway descent mad scientist if I've got to work with this!? I mean really....
I'm a little pissed, if you couldn't tell.
Wednesday, August 20, 2008
I received this little love note from my cell phone company today. Which pretty much ends my last reason to not switch to another cell phone provider.
Let's see, how can we, as a company, with the worst customer service in the industry improve ourselves? I know, let's have even less services.
Incredible. Just incredible.
Monday, August 18, 2008
Saturday, August 16, 2008
But this is just too much to pass up.
I mean really. If there was any question ever about the Obamessiah's stance on the 2nd amendment, this should lay that to rest once and for all. I mean if American Hunters and Shooters.... Well, Bridig does an excellent job of spelling out who exactly the AHSA are, so I won't go into it here.
What I find ironic(?) is the furor that the Brady Bunch and other PSHer's went into when Mary McFate was "exposed" as a "gun spy" (cue ominous music now.) Yet, here's an entire organization that's trying to do the same sort of thing. I guess it's a politics of scale thing. One person is ever so eeeeevvveeeeeellllll. A whole organization funded as a shill, well, that's just fair game. Those red neck country bumkins "clinging to their guns and religion" wouldn't be able to figure it out anyway. Right?
Anyway, BHO-my-god has never met a "resonable gun legislation" that he didn't like, so his endorsement by the Brady Bunch isn't all that surprising. What's so reprehensible about this is they're trying so hard to make it look like he's everybody's bestest friend forever.
I guess all I have to say is....
- I believe The Great Ceiling Cat did create two perfect calibers. The .45ACP and .308Win (or 7.62x51 if you're so inclined), I think it was on day 3 or 4, I'm not sure, its been a while since I read The Great Kitty Litter Box.
- If you're going to carry a defensive handgun, the caliber better have a 4 in it. Preferably followed by a 5. Yes, yes, I know, a .22 in the hand is better than a .45 at home.. yada yada yada. This is about me being a caliber snob, not about your philosophy of self-defense. Get it? Me Me Me.
- JMB for sainthood!!! That is all
- If you're looking for stopping power, get a baseball bat. And aim for the knees. Of course people look at you funny with a baseball bat stuffed down your pant leg. If you don't want to limp around all day, pack a .45.
- Guys who carry .45's are just cooler than guys who don't
- Women who carry .45's are way sexier than women who don't. If they would just make a perfume that smells like Hopps #9.
Feel free to discuss amongst yourselves.
Friday, August 15, 2008
A nice red ale to cap it off and I'm in tummy heaven. And you might as well head over to Bear's or Brigid's. They'll have made something truely exquisite and they'll have pics too.
Thursday, August 14, 2008
Yeap you guessed it. Range day! I made my way out to Happy Hollow in Sapulpa and FUN was had by all. And by all I mean me, mostly.
This first target was standard isosceles stance. Gone is my high left penchant. Plus a mag trying to hit that small dot. But that was just fun. This was done at 10 yards BTW. I'm thinking my sight picture is wrong somehow. Another day at the range should see to that. But, hey, any excuse in a storm. Or something like that.
This target I split between strong hand and off hand. I'm cross eye dominant, so I'm shooting strong hand/weak eye and weak hand/dominant eye. And the really bad flyer was strong hand. I'm chalking it up to getting used to the new trigger. That's my story and I'm sticking to it. If you cant read my writing, it's 3 - 8 rnd mags strong hand, 2 1/2 - 8 rnd mags weak hand.
The trigger job. For some reason I thought that Springfield put a 5 1/2 lb. trigger in their factory guns. Boy was I wrong. The trigger on my Mil-Spec was 7+ lbs. A really bad, I mean bad, take up, and a mushy break. A Wilson trigger tuned to a nice carry 4 lbs. and the difference is night and day. Night and Day I tell ya. Just getting used to a decent trigger took me a couple of magazines.
I also took my Armscorp M-14 out with me. I had about 50 rounds of some questionable Indian manufacture 7.62 NATO that I was trying to finish up. I put a target up at 50 yards, one at 100 yards and just for fun, one out at 200 yards. Sorry, no photos. I had the range to myself at that point. I will say I hit the 200 yard target when I shot at it. I'm just not saying where.
Fun day. Then I come home to Brigid's cooking post. I'm sure there's something about lust and envy in the Bible. I'm just not sure they were thinking about Mock Armadillo when they wrote it. But if they had been, they would have excluded it, I'm sure.
Wednesday, August 13, 2008
Which is strange, 'cause I hate politics. I mean about the only thing worse than a politician is a lawyer.
I have been internally cringing for the last year or so over the local and national political races. I've contemplated driving a rail road spike through my foot and running around in circles. It would get just as much done and I would have a greater sense of accomplishment.
I think my problem is I'm not spending enough time flying for fun.
Flying is poetic in nature. And personal flying is just about the ultimate expression of poetry of motion available to mankind. Flying removes almost all the constraints of motion that have been imposed on us by today's society. Gone is the need to follow a path of tar or concrete, the will to wander in any direction is released. Removed is the constraints on speed made by law, only limited now by physics and the strength of your airframe. A whole other dimension is added your horizon. Not only do you have left and right, forward and back, but that wondrous dimension of up and down are at your disposal. Incredible combinations of up-left, down-back, right-forward. The swoops and arcs and curves an ecstatic display of freedom. A freedom limited only by gravity and performance. And even gravity can be cheated momentarily.
I need to go fly.
Here's the original El Paso Times article.
Apparently our serving troops, out there on the sharp end defending us, don't rate as highly as our moneyed elite first class or business class passengers. It's important that our troops know we support them and we're thankful for their sacrifices. Let's just not let AA show us how.
When you make 16,000 per year like our enlisted troops do, $100 to $300 dollars is just rolling around free for the taking in our wallets. Whether or not these men get reimbursed eventually (I was in the Army, I know what it's like trying to get money out of them) they're being subjected to an unnecessary hardship.
Let's all take our hats off to AA. In a customer service based industry, they really know how to roll out the red carpet. Let's keep our customers happy.
Tuesday, August 12, 2008
Amidst all the anecdotes and folklore, there were two comments that struck me.
One, that people call 911 because they've been so indoctrinated into the nanny state mentality that they literally have abdicated all responsibility in their lives to the .gov and since 911 is the .gov dial-a-prayer line, they can't help themselves from dialing it.
The other is that people are so egotistical and self-centered that anything that happens to them is, obviously, an emergency and needs immediate and overwhelming response by the only ones.
On the one end we have the people about whom the world revolves, maybe the universe, but we haven't heard from a couple of galaxies in the pegasus direction, so we can't say that yet. And on the other end we have people who are perfectly happy orbiting around whatever shiny thing they happen to see that morning.
You'd think that would be a match made in the DNC, or whatever place serves as heaven for that sort.
I'm not going to go on about the utter waste of the limited resources these ijits are causing with their misuse of 911. That's fairly obvious.
I'm going to give you an example of each just to give you an idea.
And the other.
A second Florida man has been arrested on charges of making false 911 calls in as many days.
An arrest report says 47-year-old Carlos Gutierrez was at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino early Monday and called 911 to say the slot machine stole his money.
The report says Gutierrez left the casino to place a second 911 call to say the same thing.
He was arrested and charged with making a false 911 call. He's being held with no bail set.
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (AP) - Jacksonville police say Reginald Peterson needs to learn that 911 is not the appropriate place to complain that Subway left the sauce off a spicy Italian sandwich.WTF, over! How do people like these two make it out of the house in the morning. Rily.
Police said the 42-year-old man dialed 911 twice last week so he could have his sub made correctly. The second call was to complain that officers weren't arriving fast enough.
Subway workers told police Peterson became belligerent and yelled when they were fixing his order. They locked him out of the store after he left to call police.
When officers arrived, they tried to calm Peterson and explain the proper use of 911. Those efforts failed, and he was arrested on a charge of making false 911 calls.
I haven't been able to confirm it, but the second example is apparently on the news defending himself. Which I guess is the other option. The more logical one would be to hide in shame. But, there's no accounting for choice.
I have to give kudos to LEO's and Firefighters everywhere. They don't have a choice, they have to respond to every 911 call they get. That means that the odds are Johnny Law or Freddy Firefighter will be seeing to sandwich condiments or providing flashlights to people out smoking a cig, rather than, you know, investigating the home invasion of your grandma, or saving the guy who got run off the road by the soccermom-on-a-phone.
The mentalities of these two examples have one thing in common unfortunately. They both seek to rely on outside sources. One for blame, the other for vindication. Opposite ends of the spectrum converging on one source.
On second thought, not so much a match made in heaven. More of an all mighty clash waiting to happen. Unfortunately, our first responders will most likely get crushed in between.
And no, I'm not advocating making another law. It's already illegal to make a false emergency call and that's not the problem.
Both these groups, seemingly, can not comprehend that what they're doing is wrong. There is such a disconnect with reality that they really shouldn't be left to walk among real people.
I carry for my own protection. More and more of my friends do the same for the same reason. It's rooted in a belief of self-reliance and self-responsibility. It's almost impossible for me to understand either of these two people, but they exist, therefore, I have to believe that their internal logic supports this behavior.
The question I have is where did they learn this behavior?
How can one group feel at all comfortable having no control over their life and the other not be utterly frustrated over the same situation.
Was this some sort of social experiment that a .edu did that got out of the lab?
Fortunately, I believe that those who believe in self-reliance and responsiblity stand a better chance of survival in the long run. Let's just hope that there's a little civilization left by then.
Monday, August 11, 2008
There seems to be a lot of morons out there. Thanks god there aren't as many maniacs.
Anyway, today I'm adding a third category. Idiots. An idiot is that person in front of me at the construction zone letting everybody and his third cousin cut in front of him. Hey the 3 mile jam of cars behind you have nothing to do today either.
Sunday, August 10, 2008
Let me put it too you that while something may be glaringly obvious after the fact, as you're barrelling up on it, it's not so clear.
Ask the victims of the Nazi regime and holocaust. It started relatively benignly. Lets just make it easier for "the undesirables" to leave. If they don't, well, we can enact some laws to make it easier. Step by step, a statute here, a demonstration there, suddenly, we've got death camps and pogroms.
Below is a time line of Nazi anti-Semitic growth and the infamous Nuremberg Law.
Do you think most of them knew what was happening until it was too late?
But back to the original point. The Constitution guarantee's some of our most basic rights. Where do we draw the line in defense of those rights from those who would take them away in the name of "our own good" or "for the children" or whatever fallacious slogan they've cooked up? There's often been talk of the slippery slope, but how do you identify those first few steps? When everything seems to make sense and nothing seems to have changed.
I only have my opinion. I'd say that we should have put the line at the point the founding fathers placed it and not one step backwards.
Friday, August 8, 2008
Wednesday, August 6, 2008
Have you ever been to Wendover NV/UT. It's a little border town sitting astride the Nevada and Utah state line on I80.
Now a days, Wendover is home to a number of casinos. Being right across the state line, it's nice and convenient for those who aren't... convenient... to Reno or Las Vegas, I mean. Of course it's wasn't always a casino town.
For those of you who don't like to make a study of history, here's a bit of it for you. Wendover UT used to be home of Wendover Army Air Corp Training Base and then later Wendover Air Field. Most of the airfield's runways are still there and a number of the original fields hangers and buildings still remain. It's a museum of sorts. You see, Wendover was the airfield chosen by then Lt. Col. Paul Tibbets as the staging and training site for the crews and B-29's used in the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. That little bit of history happened this month in 1945. That makes Wendover a place that deserves to be remembered and preserved. In fact the pit they used to load the practice bombs into the B-29's is still there off in one corner of that field.
And here's a bit of trivia for all of you. As of 2002, so I've been told, every purple heart that has been awarded for the last 60 or so years has been presented with a medal commissioned back in 1945 for the invasion of main land Japan. You see, all the planning staffs had estimated that there would be a minimum of a millions casualties, wounded and dead, if the allies had to invade the main island. War being what it is, and the military being the way they are, they went ahead and had enough purple heart medals struck to cover the expected invasion. Thankfully, that price never had to be paid. The reason we never had to pay that price? Because Col. Tibbets and his men did their mission, successfully. Those two bombs ended the war.
You see, dropping those bombs saved 1,000,000 or more men having to pay a very high price. That's a good thing.
As one of the chatters at last nights Gun Nuts podcast said, "When you need smoke and covering fire to get to work in the morning...."
This is the 4th murder in my complex this year. That's not including other crimes like home invasions, drive bys, drug dealings,....
And speaking of last nights podcast. A point was made in passing that has me pondering a blog. I'll post it when I get it polished enough for me to not be completely embarrassed by it.
Monday, August 4, 2008
To me, today's politicians are the professionals at the art of the possible. They will say what needs to be said, do what needs to be done to reach that all mighty compromise. The thing they lack is that little thing called principles. Since they don't have anything they really believe in, the compromise becomes surprisingly easy.
Imagine for a moment that instead of Washington, Jefferson, Adams, Franklin, Hancock, and the other 51 men who signed the Declaration of Independence and started the revolutionary war, we had Pelosi, Kennedy (Ted), Obama, Clinton, etc. for state representatives? Would we have had a Declaration of Independence, a war of independence? Or would we have had a group of politicians who would have repeatedly gone back and told their states to not rock the boat. "Hey they may have just passed a law that required all trade with the Americas to go through English ports first, but we got them to agree to leave estates larger than 1000 acres alone!" Would we be the country that we are now, or would we be something akin to a vassal state subjected to the worst of the colonial system that existed.
I'm sure that most of our politicians today started out as principled people looking to improve our country, but I think that inch by inch, compromise by compromise, they've become the occupiers of those chairs in the senate and congress that we have. Their concern stopped being about what was best for their state and more about what was best to keep their seat. They stopped being custodians of their peoples wishes and more about keeping "those people" from upsetting their life.
Big hint: Those People are the ones you're supposed to be representing.
When Jefferson took the office of the president, he took it with the belief that his principles would not be compromised. While he did make compromises in office, he never let go of his principles, to the extent that he lost many a good friend and angered a lot of people over them.
Would he or Adams be electable in today's political climate? Unfortunately, I don't think so. They had their beliefs and I don't think they included a nanny state that current America seems to enjoy. Their opponent would merely have to mouth whatever his handlers decided the masses wanted to hear and promised whatever gub'mint cheese was the current fad and we would be less as a nation for it.
Would the phrase "All men are create equal" even exist in our Declaration of Independence unless men of principle hadn't had the courage to stand up and be counted. Not only against an oppressive absentee government, but amongst themselves also.
Sunday, August 3, 2008
Moab, UT temperature at take off - 103F
Tulsa, OK temperature at take off - 97F
Birmingham, AL temp at take off - 92F
That's outside folks. Sitting in the cockpit is exactly like sitting in a car in the sun without AC. I didn't have a thermometer with me. But my bathroom scale says I lost 7lbs today.
Now, for your moment of Cloud Zen.
Friday, August 1, 2008
We've moved to Moab, UT. Just from the view out my window, I would have much rather spent 4 days here and overnighted in Eagle. But, them's the breaks.
And for the record... "but it's a dry heat"....
Here's the view out of my hotel window. I have to say a great improvement on the one in Eagle.